Situation at EU borders in June – detections rise in Central Med


The number of illegal border crossings at Europe’s external borders in the first six months of 2021 reached over 61 000, 59% more than the total from a year ago, according to preliminary calculations.

In June, Frontex has recorded 11 150 illegal border crossings at EU’s external borders, 69% more than in the same month of last year.

This significant increase can be attributed to the fact that a year ago countries had put in place various COVID-related movement restrictions. The highest increase occurred on the Central Mediterranean route, where smuggling networks resumed their activities in Libya and Tunisia.

Central Mediterranean

The number of migrants crossing the Central Mediterranean in June amounted to 4 700, double the figure from a year ago. Nationals from Tunisia and Bangladesh were the two main nationalities on this route so far this year.

Western Mediterranean

On the route towards Spain, Frontex recorded 870 detections in June, in line with the number last year. With the sharp increase in May, the total number of crossings in the first six months of this year amounted to 5800, 27% higher than during the same period last year.

Algerian nationals represented over 60% of all arrivals on this route, followed by Moroccans.

Eastern Mediterranean

On the Eastern Mediterranean route in June, there were nearly 1100 detections of illegal border crossings bringing the total for the first half of the year to 7340, 40% lower than last year.

Nationals of Syria and Turkey accounted for the largest number of detected migrants

Western Africa

The Western African route saw nearly 6600 illegal border crossings so far this year, a sharp increase from the 2700 recorded in the previous year. Most nationals continue coming from sub-Saharan countries. In June, there were 1080 detections on this route.

Western Balkans

According to the most recent data, migratory pressure on the Western Balkan route increased with 18 600 illegal border crossings detected so far this year, 92% more than a year ago.  The top nationality on this route were Syrians.

*The figure includes other less active migratory routes not mentioned in this press release. The final figures may be higher due to delayed reporting.

Note: The preliminary data presented in this statement refer to the number of detections of irregular border-crossing at the external borders of the European Union. The same person may attempt to cross the border several times in different locations at the external border.

We use cookies on our website to support technical features that enhance your user experience.
More information